Hunger Strikers Remembered in Dromore on 31st Anniversary
Published: 7 May, 2012
Pat Doherty MP delivers main address at Hunger Strike commemoration in Dromore
Republican from across Tyrone gathered in Dromore on the 31st Anniversary of the death of Bobby Sands (Saturday 5th May) to commemorate the ten men who died on hunger strike in 1981.
A march led by the Martin Hurson Memorial Band and the Strabane Memorial Band proceeded from St. Patrick's Hall in the village to the Hunger Strikers Memorial in Church Street. Here, wreathes were laid, before a minutes silence followed by a lament on the pipes by Chairman of the Patsy Kelly Sinn Féin Cumann, Stephen McCann. This was followed by a moving rendition of 'A Song for Marcella', a song written by Brendan 'Bik' McFarlane as a tribute to Bobby Sands.
The crowd was then addressed by Pat Watters from the Patsy Kelly Sinn Fein Cumann, before Pat Doherty MP delivered the main address. Pat Doherty reflected on how Bobby Sands had been elected as MP by the people of Dromore and the surrounding area.
During his main address, Pat Doherty said,
"The deaths of the ten men in 1981 encouraged Irish Republicans to rededicate ourselves to the struggle for which the Hunger Strikers gave their lives. Due to their commitment, Irish Republicanism is stronger today than at any time since partition. We are closer to realising the vision of the Hunger Strikers. With a broad mass movement we can achieve the cause for which the Hunger Strikers and many more gave their lives to achieve, that is a 32 County Democratic Socialist Republic."
Commenting on the event, Councillor Ann Quinn said,
"The Hunger Strike commemoration has become an annual event in Dromore. The people of this area hold the hunger strikers in high esteem and are very proud of the fact that Bobby Sands was elected MP by the people of Dromore."